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The Boys Behind Blind Barber

Inside the barbershop turned bicoastal spot-to-see-and-be-seen.

In case you haven't noticed, we've kind of got a handle on the whole "behind-the-scenes of places and spaces that everyone talks about, but nobody really ever gets to chance to actually see" thing. An all-out wedding extravaganza on the island of Capri, complete with multiple Pucci couture gowns? Check. Backstage at a CHANEL fashion show, where Karl Lagerfeld himself is mingling with bejeweled supermodels and even more heavily-bejeweled front row guests? Double check. Admittedly, though? There is one secret world, that while seemingly commonplace, we honestly thought we'd never really get to peek into: the barbershop.

We mean, guys: when you think of exclusive clubs, this is pretty much it, right? For all of the rhetoric surrounding the 'hairdresser-as-ultimate-confidante' phenom, among our almost all-girl office (hi Jake!), the barber shop kind of serves as the ultimate undiscovered territory. After all, there has to be something going on there to warrant not one, but two Ice Cube-fronted films and a subsequent sitcom spin-off, right? And seeing as some pretty, well, iconically stylish men have started appearing regularly on our (virtual) pages, from Nick Wooster to Douglas Friedman, we figured it was time to break down that last barrier and get some intel on exactly what goes on behind those doors.

We were a little surprised then when we showed up at the latest Blind Barber space in Williamsburg on a hot summer morning. Their third location after the original in Manhattan’s Lower East Side and another outpost in L.A., Jeff Laub and Adam Kirsch, the young (very handsome) founders (Josh Boyd, the third in their crew, was holding it down at their West Coat shop that day) made us feel at home right away, offering us plenty of much-needed coffee (it was before noon, okay?). Because while there were a few more abnormally good-looking men being groomed in the chairs, we quickly realized that TheBlind Barber is way more than a straight-up barber shop. We mean, forget those exclusivity clauses entirely, because Laub, Kirsch and Boyd have perfected a kind of ineffably cool community center, where you’re actually welcome to drop by and just chill. And even if you’re not in need of a shave or cut (which they’re extremely good at, BTW—so good that their Blind Barber products are sold coast to coast, from Barneys to right here in our home & native land), the shop also has a full service restaurant churning out mouthwatering bites (yeah, we sampled them) and (best ever) also doubles (triples?) as a bar once the chairs close down for the evening.

We had to appreciate their priorities, though, when Laub told us their company motto. “Stay handsome,” he said. “It’s just the idea of always feeling comfortable and attacking your day, but that you need to start with good hair. We were joking about it earlier today that you can’t get shit done if you’re hair isn’t done.” Words to live by, you guys.

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